The main instruments typically buriat are the khur (bowed-two string fiddle) and kuchir (bowed 4-string fiddle, resembling the chinese erhu). Other instrument are sometimes borrowed from other republics. Here there is a list of the traditional instruments played in Buryatia:
- Cordophones: chanza (three-stringed lute with an oval body; the neck is fretless). The name likely degenerated from the russian dombra, the morin khuur, a mongolian two-stringed horse-head fiddle. yatagan (mongolian zither), which seems that has been adopted from the neighbour country. Iochín (percussion instrument with many strings).
Khur. Thanks to Dmitry AyurovAerophones: limba (flute), bishkur (double reed troumpet played in buddhist temples) amd shebshur (trumpet made of birch-bark to lure the deers).
- Idiophones: khomus (metal jew's harp).
- Membranophes: barely are played
The pictures of the instruments were taken in the Etnographic Museum of Talsty
Most of the traditional groups in Buryatia perform traditional buriat and mongolian music. When I was in Ulan-Udé I met the morin huur player Dmitry Ayurov, musical director of the group Bayar. The other members of the group are Kermen Kalyaeva (iochin), Viktor Zhalsanov (throat singing), Valentina Namdykova (yataga), Dashima (vocals) and Bulat Tsybikov (ikh khuur). Also I met the singer Irina But, who sings classical music. Dmitry and I visited together a luthier, that for my surprise was specializated in spanish guitars and balalaikas, but I could not see any "buriat" instrument. Where was the old khur??. The group Bayar has a strong influence in mongol music with nice arrangements. They released a CD entitled "Buryat-Mongolanian music". It was is dedicated to Dimitry's father. I recommended it.!!
Other traditional group is Namgar, which leader is Namgar Lhasaranova, based in Moscow. She sings with musicians from Mongolia and Buratia. Their CD can entitled "Hatar" ("Round Dance") (2003 - SKMR008) can be found in the russian label Sketis http://sketis-music.com/index/cats/112. It is also possible to find it the american online shop CDroots http://www.cdroots.com/sketis.shtml or Tuva Trader http://scs-intl.com/trader/In the CD there are buryat dance tunes njeriejen and joohor, ""ring-songs" and old traditional mongolian songs. The instruments that can be heard are morin huur, chanza, yataga, limba (flute) and khomus (jew's harps) with electronic arrangements. As the mongols in this CD there is throat-singing by the mongol Altangerel Khishigtogtokh.
2. The Chorches. Comment: Many siberian minorities has been deeply studied by the antropologist Carmen Arnau http://www.carmenarnaumuro.com/cursos.htm. She published several books and articles about minorities from Yakutia and Buriatia.
Dimitry, the author, Irina But and an student from Vladivostok
Landscape near Dastan Ivolginsk